Facebook for a 13 Year Old Dilema

Updated on March 07, 2011
Y.C. asks from Orlando, FL
36 answers

My daughter has wanted a facebook for 3 years, to which my husband and I said no. I know most of her friends are in FB, but it just didn't seem something a kid need (since they see each other at school everyday).
One day we find her Googling (word?) which we didn't approve unless she let us know first because sometimes you will type Pokemon and some idiot would put some XXX stuff.
Well, a couple months ago my daughter made a power point presentation on why she could have a FB.
She point at the fact that 13 is the age that you are allow to open a FB account on the website, that you can hide your info and only show it to who you decide and she offered to gave us her password.
We said we will think about later.
I made the mistake to say yes at one point without talking to my husband and when she told him he was mad because he thinks she shouldn't have an account in there.
My husband points are that she is too young to understand the reprecutions of her acts like putting pictures of her self that in a future will affect her (like the teacher that put pictures of her self drinking).
He is also worry about predators and also (to my surprise) that she would have to deal with internet bullies, like friend-enemies, unfriending her or having acces to her personal info.
I don't have a FB account and I am not sure how everything works in there, I don't know how predators can get to my daughter if she only friends her school friends. I am also scare of the drama that FB can bring but I know my daughter has to start learn to deal. I also understand my husband points and I am afraid of the same things.
Question is, how safe is Facebook for preteens, and if you would agree to your kids to open an account but your husband doesn't what would you do?
Thank you and sorry for the long question I wanted to make sure that both points of views were put in the table.

1 mom found this helpful

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So What Happened?

Thank you all, after reading all your replies I talk to my husband again and he was very clear that that is not a good time yet. He said something about the owner of Facebook rights on everything is post and wonder what he can do since he own it. The true is that the more I read your posts the more I know that I don't know enough about FB to feel comfortable so we decide to wait until until I have an account and maybe let her play the game in my account and have 2 or 3 close friends on my account.
I wish I hadn't run into say yes to my daughter, l will have to remember to not do this again.
Thank you so much for your opinions.

Featured Answers



answers from Boston on

She could sign up with a fake name. You can go into settings and set them all to "friends only" so the only thing available to a non-friend would be the name. I have not yet allowed my kids to go on FB but they do use other sites under assumed screen names.

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answers from Dallas on

I like FB for 1 thing and 1 thing only: seeing pictures of my out of town frends' children. Period. I believe FB should only be for adults. I believe it destroys children being children. Children should be play with their friends and be involved in some sort of exercise/activity, like sports, gymnastics, ballet, dance, kid yoga - anything at all. Being stuck inside addicted to a FB page is very bad. It teaches kids not to be involved in outside activities and can only lead to trouble. There is no need for children to talk to their local friends that they see every day on the internet!!! They should talk to their friends in person (via a playdate) or occasionally on the phone. FB is very addicting and I wish it didn't exist. People (even adults) play petty games by defriending their once FB friends, by blocking their friends, etc. I believe FB teaches kids to be mean (by blocking or defriending), or possibly writing mean things on someone's wall. It definately teaches them to gossip and see what other people are doing. I think nothing good can come out of children using FB. Children should be involved in extra curricular physical activities (such as sports), and they need to be doing their homework. FB is a waste of time and teaches them nothing (or how to gossip, spy on people and write mean things on peoples' wall). Nothing good can come out of kids on FB. Can you tell I am against this? ha ha! Have I made myself clear?

One ore thing - that is SO AMAZING that your daughter made a power point presentation!!! How on earth did she learn how to do that??? I know she's not learning that in school. That souds like a college course to me. Your daughter is very smart - I would hate to see her brain shrink by spending her time on FB. I see a future computer programmer or web designer on your hands! Encourage her intelligence via her school work, and maybe even sign her up for a power point course at a library or a local community college. She can learn even more about power point presentations. Put her intelligence to good use!! I am just amazed that she knows how to use power point. My husband makes power point presentations all the time for work.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

I agree with your husband and would say no.

She hasn't a need of FB at this point in her life. For example:If you had just moved, perhaps to keep in contact with friends, etc, might be a reason. For recreation? No.

I work at school, and have been listening all week to a violent squabble between several 12-13 yr-olds about things being said on FB, and stolen passwords. I keep wondering why these children are on a computer without parental supervision?

It's my personal opinion that FB and social networking at this age detracts from education and wholesome things children should be doing, such as their homework, reading, hobbies, etc. Computer for 13 year olds should be highly monitored and consist of educational pursuits.

Please don't give in to the "Everyone is doing it, has it, etc" arguement and stand firm with your husband. When she's old enough for more mature priviledges is the time to grant them.

Good Luck!

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Austin on

Facebook is the new "Princess Phone" for teens. remember how much time you spent on the phone when you were a teen? You saw your friends all day long, but you talked on the phone with them at night.

We all have FB accounts in our family even my 90 year old grandmother!
This is a great way for the parents, grandparents and great grandparents to keep up with family.. This has also made the kids be respectful on their pages. If a friend posts using poor language, or talking about inappropriate language, the child will remind them, "my family is on here!" Or the child can delete any posts or you could delete anything..

FB can have very tight controls so that only the people SHE allows to be her friend can see anything about her. Be sure to use the safety tools and to only friend people YOU allow he to friend. After a while of being on FB you are going to realize, there is no chance of a predator or strangers seeing her pages..

If anyone out there has a facebook and does not know about all of the safety and privacy features.. FIGURE IT OUT,. There is no excuse to keep saying that facebook is always dangerous. It is up to YOU to keep your page protected. Just because someone wants to friend you, does not mean you accept unless you ACTUALLY know them!

This is a good time to be able to have complete control over her pages. She will learn to be responsible for her page and her profile. It is also a great way to keep her in line.. You must finish your homework, before you can get on facebook, You need to complete your chores until you can get on FB.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Cumberland on

It's shocking and frequented by preditors looking for girls your daughters age. They may get a friend request from a stranger and their curiousity will get the best of them-then their private info is no longer private.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Minneapolis on


3 moms found this helpful


answers from Las Vegas on

I've had an FB account for quite a while now. I have friends who have allowed their pre-teens to open up their own FB accounts and those children have not been harassed or victimized by anyone at any time. Here's the thing though: My friends are very involved parents have set down specific limitations on their children's FB and their children know that FB is a privilege, not a right.

The privacy settings on each of these children's FB accounts are as tight as they can be. As an added measure of safety, you don't even have to use your daughter's full name or real name to set up the account and you require that her profile pic be of her dog or her cat or some nature scene to keep her anonymity.

Each of these parents have the password for their child's account and monitor it frequently. If there's anything on their child's profile that they disapprove of (info, photos, statuses, friends), they will not hesitate to delete the offensive or questionable content.

I know that all of my friends have set up their children's computers in a highly visible area so there is no way to hide what they are doing on the computer. And I also know that, although these children are really smart kids who have earned their parents respect and trust, each of my friends will not hesitate to close their children's FB account if it gets to become a problem.

I think it is up to you whether or not you feel comfortable allowing your daughter to set up her own FB account. I just think that sometimes if we want our children to grow up to be responsible adults someday, we need to give them some freedom to do so but also be their and guide them as they are doing it so that they will no how to make the best choices possible.

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answers from Washington DC on

I would continue to discuss it. If your daughter really wants FB, she doesn't have to ask. She could make one without you knowing. I give her (and you) credit for her discussing it.

I think that 1, you need to get filtering software (or use your router if you have one) to limit the number of unexpected Googles. Make sure she is aware of it and why.

2) Get yourself a FB account and play with it. I'm sure there are sites detailing things like how to keep your kid's account private. Something she needs to think about are things like how (at one time anyway) if you messaged someone and didn't make them your friend, they still had access to info for 30 days or something. She should NOT put her school, her birthdate, her year of graduation. My SD has her school and year and I keep telling her to take it off, but that's really the only thing. You can also filter people so that only certain info is shown to school friends. And I would not allow her to play FB games because games and applications allow info to strangers.

You should also discuss with your daughter the ramifications of putting up info. Even if it's deleted, images and text get "cached" and can be found later. If this is a concern of your husband's then he needs to do research and present his side, too.

It may be a long process and you may need to compromise and tell her that she can have it under these conditions at a particular age. My stepdaughter got her first email account at 11 or 12 but we controlled it (had the password, checked it) and she knew we wouldn't invade, but we would be watching.

I think it's not wrong to say, "I'm sorry, I didn't realize when I said Yes that your father hadn't fully weighed in on his concerns and I think we all need to talk more before you sign up."

I also think that if you have already caught her googling when you said not to, that's something she's going to have to prove (your trust) before you allow FB. Tell her it's a process. Meet this criteria and we'll consider more privileges. That worked well for my SD who complained about an early bedtime. We said Okay, if you are on time and catch the bus for 2 weeks, you earn 30 minutes. Once the rule was established, she knew what SHE had to do to earn it.

As a general rule, we also keep the computers in public spaces so if I'm in the room and I see SD chatting I could ask who it is/see the conversation or I can see that she's playing Scrabble, so I ask about her game. (My SD is 16 so it's not the same situation as yours.)

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answers from Daytona Beach on

definitely not safe. it is nothing but a social dating site for people looking to hook up. even if your daughter does have a private page, others don't and the pics that some of these people have are inappropriate. people can still request her to be friends and have private conversations. cyber bullying is getting huge now. i don't have an account, but i did and took it off. more than half of all marriages that end in divorce are due to facebook, myspace, etc. i know she's only 13 so wouldn't have to deal with that, but it says something about the site to me.

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answers from San Francisco on

My 13 yo daughter has one. It's marked private (there are different levels of private, hers is the most private available so not even friends of friends can see her pics and info, only her friends.) I also have her password so I can go into her acct if I ever need to (I'm on her friends list so I can see her wall etc, but you need to sign in as the person to check friend requests and such.) She does not add friends until I give the okay. As far as your daughter googling and such, my computer allows for different users to sign on, I have my kids sign in under the useracct I gave them that is set up with parental controls that block any websites that have mature or adult content. So far it has worked really well! They get irritated at times because they can't see certain youtube videos (ex: Family Guy) but oh well! If there is a site they are having trouble getting to they can ask for my help. Now, regarding your husband? I really think you two need to be in agreement. I would not go against my husband on this but would try to compromise, show him the options out there and maybe opt for a trial period? Explain to him that everything would be viewable to him for approval.

EDIT: Funny, S.S., I will let my 80 yo aunt know that she's missing out on all those hot dates! All this time she's been using Facebook to keep in touch with all of her brothers, sisters, kids, grandkids, friends, etc and she could have been hooking up! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

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answers from El Paso on

I understand where you're coming from. We are dealing with the same thing here.
I made the mistake of allowing my son to have a FB account. He's also 13 and all his friends are on it, so like you I finally gave in. He is soooo addicted to that thing...it's all he wants to do. We have resorted to giving him a time limit.

We are also worried about predators so we are constantly reminding my son not to accept friend requests from people and not to chat with strangers. and never to tell anybody where he lives or give out his number. Keep everything private.

I have access to my son's account too.I don't snoop but I will log on from time to time to make sure there are no strange people or posts on his wall and to make sure he isn't bullying anybody or causing trouble. So far, it's been working out.
Personally, I think it's a good deal....you get her password so that you can log on to check on her and she gets to have the account. Just make sure to limit her time on it because Facebook is SUPER addicting.
Set some rules (no accepting strangers as friends, no bullying or participating in online bullying, limit time on FB, no giving out her password to friends, etc) and if she breaks just one of those rules delete the account. Sit down with her and talk to her about it and tell her what you plan to do if she breaks one rule and follow through. It is hard to delete the account because it's very difficult to find the delete button so I had to google it when I deleted my account.
I really don't know what to say about your husband. That's a hard one...wish I could help.

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answers from Philadelphia on

Both of my children have FB accounts....daughter 12 and son 14. I also have a FB account and love it. The rules are that I have their passwords and they must accept my friendship request...meaning I get to see everything they post and all of their information. In turn, I promised I would never post anything on their wall or comment on anything they post online.

I have engrained it into them to think about what and how they want to post something. I have said referring to something they want to post - if you can't shout out to the world for everyone to hear - don't post it.

I have not had any problems. A couple of times I have spoken to them privately that their post was not 100% appropriate, but that's it. Good luck, you just have to stay on top of it.

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answers from Modesto on

I say no until they are 16. 16 needs to be that "magical" age for many things, like driving, dating, facebook, and texting.
Younger kids are too easily influenced, are not mature enough, and the "what ifs?" are just too great. They are too prone to getting "addicted" to being online and there's just PLENTY of time for that later.
Right now it's more important that education is first and foremost on the list... putting a bunch of roadblocks in front of them like social sites may be too much of a swerve from what is really important during the teen years. jmo

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answers from Cleveland on

None of my kids will have a Facebook account as long as they're under my roof. Just because your profile is private doesn't mean people can't or won't get the information. Facebook is notorious for privacy violations. You're constantly having to change settings and keep abreast of new security issues. A child doesn't have the intelligence to know what is best for him/her. That's why you're the parent.

With that being said, the reason none of my kids will have a Facebook page until they've moved out on their own is because my husband thinks they shouldn't have one. I think at 17 they can have one and begin to learn about it. But, because he says no, I back him up. We're a team and if the kids pit us against each other we have bigger issues.

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answers from Portland on

A couple comments:

People love the idea of privacy settings, but the fact of the matter is that these settings are reset (without notice) from time to time. So, if you do go the FB route, that would be something you will want to check on very frequently.

People feel that FB can be a private, friends-only thing, but the fact of the matter is that Facebook OWNS all the content posted. So they can legally use your content/photos/whatever for their own financial gain. Think stock images....

Me personally, I'd compromise with a "pay as you go" cellphone that could call only a preset selection of phone numbers. So she could still chat (a more human way of communicating) and talk to friends, and not have it all hanging out on Facebook.

If you do let her do FB, consider sitting down with her as she looks at her account, at least once a week, and see what's going on. She's obviously adept at presenting information, so let her give you a tour of her page. And then get on FB yourself and 'friend' her. Some parents treat FB as their child's diary. I disagree with this thinking-- one wouldn't post their diary on a billboard for all to see. If the parents can't see it, no one else should!

Me, personally, my son's getting a FB account when he can pay his own rent, and is at least 18. I think it's a bunch of nonsense and just another distraction during some very busy years of life.

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answers from Houston on

1.I would never let my daughter do something my husband didnt agree too.

2.i wouldnt let my daughter do something i didnt know anything about.

Those things compounded are an automatic no for your situation. but if I WERE YOU and my husband was ok with it, id let her, because your daughter sounds mature about it, has offered her password, and basically handled the convo quite well. but im afraid its a no go.

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answers from New York on

I originally got on facebook a few years ago because I knew it was the way of the future and I didn't want to be left behind....mainly for my kids' sake (12 and 9 now). Can it become addictive? yes. Can you use it to your advantage as a privilege that can be taken away as well as an opportunity for your daughter to show you her ability to be responsible with it? Yes. She created a power point presentation for you! That's impressive! You can keep it private, as you should. My email is the contact email so everything that gets posted on my son's page goes to my blackberry. I have to say, it's pretty uneventful stuff. Kids aren't as bad as we may fear them to be. My advice is to allow her to have one with limits that are set beforehand and an understanding that you can shut it down if the need arises. Why not try it out? She is growing up. This is the way of the future. Show her you trust her. Let her prove herself to you.

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answers from Minneapolis on

Interesting. My kids didn't get cell phones until they were 16, aren't allowed to date until they are 16, etc., etc., but my two 13 yr olds (I have 6 kids: 22, 20, 13, 13, 11, and 10), both got Facebook accts for their 13th birthdays. Since they do not have cell phones, they can only access it when they have computer access, which is monitored at home, and the school does not have computers that will allow students to access Facebook during lab time. In theory, they could go on line at a friend's house, but it just hasn't been a problem. The nicest thing about Facebook is I have 2 girls that are grown and gone and it is a way for my 13 year olds to keep in touch. Also, if an activity is cancelled for some reason for church or karate or scouts, that is where it is usually posted. I know all of the kids "friends" on Facebook, and they are all "friends" with me as well (my Facebook is very "PG" because of this). I also have their passwords. Is it safe? Well, it is about as safe as you make it. Check on their accounts often, see who they are friending, make sure they understand that not very nice people can try to contact you on Facebook, limit computer time, restrict access while they are not at home. There ARE ways for kids to Facebook safely. I think it worked for us as an intermediate tool to start learning about computer safety in a world that is basically RUN by computer knowledge. Look at it this way, you would want your kid to have training and slowly learn responsibility before you hand them the car keys . . . treat this the same way - you are "training" her to live in a world where computers are a part of everyday life and used as a form of communication. Do I agree that this is a good thing? No. But, it is the way of the world *sigh*

Good luck no matter what you decide.

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answers from Lansing on

Both my nephews have a FB account. My sister and brother in law (along with me when asked) monitor it (Log on to their accounts and check things out).

I also have a lot of younger kids on my FB (my friends children, daycare kids, family).

Does any of your family members have FB? You can always make an account, make her add you as a friend, along with getting her email address and password so you can monitor it.

I personally, don't see anything wrong with having an account as long as its being monitored and the teen has their profile on private just so no random tom, dick or harry can view it. My sister also ok's the people that my nephews add as friends.

I say go for it. Monitor it and if everything goes good, let her keep it...just keep an eye on it! It's also a good way for you to find friends and family members from the past :)

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answers from Norfolk on

I wish Facebook would up their minimum age limit.
It was originally a collage communication chat/bulletin board.
Even collage age kids do dumb things and then document it on their own pages and have it haunt them for the rest of their lives.
SO many people have to have their data 'scrubbed' (deleted) in order to be hire-able once they've finally managed to out grow their adolescent-hood. And, granted, this takes some people till their mid 20's before they mature and some people never grow up.
Since your daughter is so into research and power point presentations, perhaps she should research the people who have lost jobs, been turned down for promotion, been photographed during supposed private moments then later humiliated to the point of committing suicide all thanks to this modern miracle of communication. She's gathered all the pluses and downplayed all the dangers and negatives.
And even if she proves she's ready to play with fire - you're still the parent and can deny her playing with matches until she's grown, on her own and her life is her's to live, perhaps ruin, as she sees fit.

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answers from Chicago on

I see you already made up your mind in your "what happened" but I wanted to say that my 13-year-old has a facebook page, as do I, and we have had no problems and she really enjoys it.

Our family is scattered across the country, so she mostly uses it to keep track of her cousins, aunts and uncles, and grandparents. But slowly her friends have gotten accounts and have friended her. It has been a fun way for them to stay in touch. Sure, there can be drama, but I look at her page every day, and she knows that if there were to be drama, there would be no more facebook. I also have the highest security settings on it, and she isn't allowed to post pictures.

If you don't allow her this now, I would say consider it in the future because kids who don't get to participate in social things (and unfortunately today that includes social media) often feel left out and that's a difficult thing for pre-teens and teens.

If she's a good girl, gets good grades and respects you and your husband it seems like rewarding her with a facebook account might be a small step in her gaining some independence, which kids that age are looking for. Good luck with all of it. It's a scary world out there.


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answers from Norfolk on

as far as your question on predators and facebook. You send a request to be friends with someone, it isn't a complete stranger. Majority only approve family and friends (say in her case someone she knew in 1st grade but moved away)

As a far as people viewing her personal information, they can only see what you put into it. For example for occupation just leave it blank-likes and dis likes she could type if you know me then you know that...or not type anything at all.

Her cell phone number only if she puts one in. That stuff doesn't magically appear. If anyone really needs that info she can send them a email.

So to answer your question it is safe. As far as pictures of herself ruining her future. Well bad judgment is bad judgment. It is crazy how stuff comes back to hunt us isn't.

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answers from Honolulu on

The thing is, even with adults.... they do things impulsively and don't think... it all out.

Teens/kids... make mistakes. They think they know everything, even if monitored by a parent, things happen.

My friend, her Daughters had an account. One day a MAN starts contacting them. THEY thought, it was funny and that they were smarter than a "dorky old man.." and they laughed about it. One day, he starts to proposition them etc. and says sexual things. The Mom was monitoring them and gave them 'rules.' But, they thought they could handle it. Well they couldn't. This Man, was a Predator.
They took care of it, contacted the Police.

So the thing is: a kid, does NOT have, full awareness nor complete ability to gauge things and they are not, wise.
Those are things, a parent cannot fully control, even with rules, even with monitoring the kids online etc.

So many things, occur on FB and online. To kids, because of kids, despite the Parents monitoring them.
Then there are cell phones, on which teens Text each others, send photos to each other, and GIVE OUT their phone numbers to whomever... and then that person gives out their phone number to others... without asking that person, first if they can give out their phone number etc. So then, it snowballs.

Things snowball.

The human brain, is not fully developed until 26 years old.
Even College kids, make mistakes about privacy online and on FB.
Even adults.

AND... think down the road. Once a kid graduates from College, and tries to get a job... Employers... LOOK up their name online... and then, their whole Internet "history" is there, for the potential Employers to see.
A "KID" once they have online accounts... have a HISTORY, online... about themselves. AND their photos that they post. Online. Or that their parents post, online and comment about their kids.. Online. To others. Or that their friends, post online about them. Too. Via photos or comments.

all the best,

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answers from Portland on

I think it is cool that she did the powerpoint..that is kind mature.

You can make your FB very private w/secerity settings. If you think she is mature enough to have a FB, I would sugest that you give her a scheduled time at home where you can sign her in instead of letting her have acess to the password (which she could change at any time). That way it is in your home and she can't get on for hours and hours or at school/anywhere else b/c you would be signing her in/out each time.

If she does this well then maybe at 16ish I would let her have her own as long as I could check it out once in a while.

Good Luck! :)

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answers from Chicago on

I was listening to a radio show that featured a pediatrician talking about children in their teens and he recommended FB when the child is in 8th grade. I'm a 48 YO woman and I have gotten some weird friend requests on FB - one that featured a teenage girl is a provocative pose - from people I didn't know. I think that some of the friend requests might be spam or pulling people in for other activities. On a personal note, I have found FB depressing sometimes - people talking about all the swell things they are doing, etc. I've stopped checking FB because I just found that I felt as if I led a boring life compared to others and it changed my mood.

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answers from Dallas on

This is what I suggest. Get your own FB account and really learn how to use it. Privacy settings, photos, the whole bag. In a couple of months, or a year, you can decide whether to allow your daughter on, but you will insist on being her "friend" where you can see everything she does. You insist on having her passwords to you can see EVERYTHING. Then make your rules and if she abides you can let her on, and she can stay on.

You don't have to allow photos or you can limit what is allowed. You can set up her FB so that no one except her friends see anything.

I was like you and still would be VERY cautious with a 13 year old, but if you learn about FB first then you will know how to protect your daughter and give her some freedom at the same time...... when you are ready.

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answers from Buffalo on

seriously if she's intelligent enoug to make a power point presentation she;s smart enough to do facebook. this really does not have to be a big deal. there is such a thing as sheltering too much and she will only grow more resentful as she matures. YOU set up the account, YOU have the password, YOU contil what pics go on...Let her have it!!!!! You are there to oversee. No one is suggesting you give her free reign, the internet is a dnageorus place...but if you stay in the background overseeing, there is no problem!!!! Predators cant get her on there...my 8 yr old son has afb account. only his friends see his page, noone else, i have his passowrd, and if anyone gets out of line its a click of a button to unfriend them, block them, start anew acocunt, whatever! relax folks....this is a smart little girl, give her some credit.

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answers from Des Moines on

I don't think FB is safe for some adults and esspecially not children or preteens. I know it must be tough with a preteen age daughter. My oldest is only 7 and I am already feeling the peer influence. I think it is our jobs as parents to protect our children. I think it is our jobs as parents to protect our children and it sounds like your husband is trying to protect her from FB.

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answers from Bellingham on

My 14 year old step daughter begged for a fb for months... We finally said yes and have not had any issues. At first it was fun and exciting... And now that she's had it for over a year, she hardly goes in it. The only "issue" we've had is that we checked her friends list and she had over 500 friends.. So we started asking "how do u know this person...?" and a majority if them were people she'd met once at a game or something... Most of her friends are people her age, but with close monitoring I don't think it's a big deal... We have her password and also have our own fb accounts so we can monitor everything...

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answers from New York on

Honestly, if your daughter wants a FB account so badly, she is probably going to go and make one anyway. Either at a friends house, a library... etc. I know I would have when I was that age. Wouldn't you rather it be done on your terms where you can monitor the content posted?

I read a lot of these reviews and I would have to agree that you should definitely create your own account first. Having her add you as a friend is also a great idea. If you have a smart phone I really liked the idea of having posts and messages sent directly to you, however, I know on my old blackberry I never got notifications. On my current Droid I only get them sometimes, so it's something you would need to stay on top of.

If she is mature enough to discuss it with you and your husband, then I would give her the benefit of the doubt. Maybe a trial period. And if she's smart enough to make a powerpoint presentation about it, then she is smart enough to know how to do it behind your back. A lot of my friends kids even younger have FB accounts. There are a lot of ways to protect your kid on there, you just need to learn how.

I'd also suggest having them add whatever friends and family of yours that will help you in keeping an eye on her activity. It never hurts to have a few more sets of eyes looking out!

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answers from New York on

My kids are not even reading yet so it will be a while before we tackle this issue. But I am on Face book myself. I haven't had any problems and I am friends with 3 of my younger cousins (2 in their 20's and one in high school). I haven't seen anything worrisome in their posts although the older ones post a lot of pictures of themselves. I do not post pictures of my children or refer to them by name on Facebook, though many of my friends do. I usually send relatives pictures as email attachments instead.

If I were you I would get an FB account for yourself and learn to use it. After a few months you will have an idea how it works and can figure out what you and your husband feel are appropriate rules for your daughter. I would not let a preteen or young teen online unsupervised but allowing a teenager to use the internet with supervision and guidelines is fairly reasonable. maybe waiting until she starts high school would be a good guideline. If you are supervising while she is in her teens she will be a lot better prepared to use the internet responsibly when she is on her own after age 18. Also, if you are on her friends list she will hopefully have the sense to not post anything she wouldn't say in front of you.

Keep in mind even back in the dark ages of the 1980's when I was a teenager there were dangers and adult only content available. I was a pretty nerdy teen but we used our "nerdy" skills to find "The Joy of Sex" at the public library and get the information we wanted.



answers from New York on

I wouldn't allow a preteen to have a facebook (my 11 year old does not have one) and you were right not to allow it when your daughter was 10. However, she is NOT a preteen anymore! She is a teenager. I allowed my daughter to have a facebook page when she was almost 14. That said, her privacy settings are such that only her friends can see her page, and my husband and I are both "friends" with her on Facebook, so we can see what's on her page and what she is doing.
As for Googling, kids need to google things for school projects and such all the time, my 6th grader needed to do that last school year in 5th. If you have not invested in protective software for your computer, I would investigate that now.
Let your daughter show you and your husband around Facebook, so you can see what her friends' pages look like, and only allow the account if you will both have one and "friend" her so that you can see what she's doing there. Facebook, texting and IM are the ways that teens keep in touch nowadays - they don't talk on the phone for hours like when I was a teen in the 1980's
Someone else posted that Facebook is just a social dating site. It's not a dating site at all. Someone saw the movie and what it was originally intended for according to the movie, but Facebook is actually NOT for meeting strangers, it's for keeping in touch with people you know.


answers from New York on

honor your husband, every concern he has is valid and you don't need to cause strife in your marital relations.



answers from New York on

you could open it together maybe 1 photo and use your password only it sounds like a compromise maybe only on weekends



answers from Chicago on

My son is 13 he is not allowed FB, not allowed to post on You Tube, not allowed Twitter. His Skype account is disabled on his laptop by my H, so no-chat. He is welcome to chat on the desktop- but apparently the need to have these conversations seized when they had to become transparent.
He was mad - I do not care. He later turned around after he heard/saw the troubles other kids got into after being allowed the risky freedom.
I yesterday had a long walk and talk with him about dating expectations. He is not dating, not even a girl in a picture - but I wanted to tell him ahead of time that he is not allowed and the reasons for it (mainly because of emotional and psychological immaturity) so there are no disagreements later about specific girl when we will face him mad and shouting that we don’t understand and have no right.
Your kids do not have to like the rules. They are not emotionally ready or mature to manage complex mazes of social networking. You may have to tell your daughter that you made a mistake and agreed to something too quickly without daddy’s approval. Revoke the approval and stand together firm on the issue. You are saying that you agree to her having an account. Are you willing to supervise and check everyday what she does on the FB? Because that is what you will have to do at least for couple of years to make sure she is safe and following your rules. Are you prepared that she will spend time on FB? You cannot blindly trust a kid.
From your post I see that you agree with your H but your daughter persuaded you with her presentation and swayed you to her side. Divide and concur. Good strategy for her but not for you. Be strong. Win now and your kid will think twice about double-crossing you later. Good luck.



answers from Milwaukee on

I don't let my 13 year old daughter have one. FB draws me in every day a couple times. Too much of my time just checking to see if someone commented on my posts or what people are doing. I don't like the idea of kids posting there where abouts all the time for everyone to see. And as far as only friends seeing what they write, if they are with other friends in front of their computer they will see everything your daughter posts as well. I see other peoples comments that just appear and they are not my friends. I am waiting for the day that it goes away for some reason. I hate that my pic pops up for others to add me if they want to because that's how people have found me that I don't want as friends or through other peoples friends lists. I just wanted mine to be affiliated with my family and a few close friends. I think people post some of the dumbest comments and a lot of negative talk that they forget the kids on their lists do see. What happened to all the fuss about having a computer in a room where we can monitor our children? Now FB? I hate that kids can have personal conversations on there with anyone they want. The parents can't see that. You can warn your child not to put pics of herself on there but her friends will. All the swearing gets to me. It isn't from my friends but I see it from friends friends whenever i tune in. My husband and I feel the same way about it. My big issue is the private chats and also teenagers telling the whole city their whereabouts.

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